Socio-neuro risk factors for suicidal behavior in criminal offenders with psychotic disorders.
ABSTRACT: Relative to the general population, individuals with psychotic disorders have a higher risk of suicide. Suicide risk is also elevated in criminal offenders. Thus, psychotic-disordered individuals with antisocial tendencies may form an especially high-risk group. We built upon prior risk analyses by examining whether neurobehavioral correlates of social cognition were associated with suicidal behavior in criminal offenders with psychotic disorders. We assessed empathic accuracy and brain structure in four groups: (i) incarcerated offenders with psychotic disorders and past suicide attempts, (ii) incarcerated offenders with psychotic disorders and no suicide attempts, (iii) incarcerated offenders without psychotic disorders and (iv) community non-offenders without psychotic disorders. Established suicide risk variables were examined along with empathic accuracy and gray matter in brain regions implicated in social cognition. Relative to the other groups, offenders with psychotic disorders and suicide attempts had lower empathic accuracy and smaller temporal pole volumes. Empathic accuracy and temporal pole volumes were significantly associated with suicide attempts independent of other risk variables. The results indicate that brain and behavioral correlates of social cognition may add incremental value to models of suicide risk.
Project description:Psychotic disorders are associated with neurobehavioral impairments in mental state attribution (mentalizing). These impairments are most severe in psychotic patients with elevated symptom levels, particularly negative and cognitive symptoms. There have been few studies of functional connectivity related to mentalizing in psychotic disorders and associations with symptoms. We conducted a functional MRI study of affective mentalizing in individuals with psychotic disorders and varying symptom levels (positive, negative, cognitive). Participants were drawn from an adjudicated inpatient forensic psychiatric population (criminal offenders). Functional MRI scans were acquired using a 32-channel ultra-fast multiband imaging sequence. Mentalizing task performance and functional connectivity were assessed in psychotic criminal offenders (n = 46) and nonpsychotic offenders (n = 41). Temporal coherent brain networks were estimated with group independent component analysis (ICA). Relative to nonpsychotic offenders, psychotic offenders showed impaired task performance and reduced activation in a component comprising the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, superior temporal gyrus, and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex. Positive and cognitive symptoms were inversely correlated with component activity and task performance. The results are discussed with reference to potential mechanisms underlying impaired social cognition in psychotic disorders and across symptom types.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Individuals with psychotic disorders are at high risk of suicidal behavior. The study examined whether response to item 9 of the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), which asks about thoughts of death or self-harm, predicts suicidal behavior among outpatients with diagnoses of psychotic disorders. METHODS:Electronic health records (EHRs) from seven large integrated health systems were used to identify all outpatient visits by adults with a diagnosis of schizophrenia spectrum psychosis or unspecified psychosis from January 1, 2009, to June 30, 2015, during which a PHQ-9 was completed (N=32,982 visits by 5,947 patients). Suicide attempts over the 90 days following each visit were ascertained from EHRs and insurance claims. Suicide deaths were ascertained from state death certificate files. RESULTS:Risk of suicide attempt within 90 days of an outpatient visit was .8% among patients reporting no thoughts of death or self-harm and 3.5% among those reporting such thoughts "nearly every day." Over 90 days of follow-up, 47% of suicide attempts occurred among those who reported any recent thoughts of death or self-harm at the sampled visit. Also, 59% of attempts occurred among those reporting thoughts of death or self-harm at the index visit or any visit in the prior year. The number of suicide deaths within 90 days (N=10) was too small to accurately assess the relationship between PHQ-9 item 9 response and subsequent suicide death. CONCLUSIONS:Among outpatients with psychotic disorders, response to item 9 of the PHQ-9 accurately identified those at increased short-term risk of a suicide attempt.
Project description:BACKGROUND: To investigate whether schizophrenia patients with both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm have earlier age of onset of psychotic and depressive symptoms and higher levels of clinical symptoms compared to patients with only suicide attempts or without suicide attempt. METHODS: Using a cross-sectional design, 251 patients (18-61 years old, 58% men) with schizophrenia treated at hospitals in Oslo and Innlandet Hospital Trust, Norway, were assessed with a comprehensive clinical research protocol and divided into three groups based on their history of suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm. RESULTS: Suicide attempts were present in 88 patients (35%); 52 had suicide attempts only (29%) and 36 had both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm (14%). When compared with nonattempters and those with suicide attempts without non-suicidal self-harm, patients with both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm were more frequently women, younger at the onset of psychotic symptoms, had longer duration of untreated psychosis, and had higher levels of current impulsivity/aggression and depression. Patients with both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm were more likely to repeat suicide attempts than patients with suicide attempts only. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm had different illness history and clinical characteristics compared to patients with only suicide attempts or patients without suicidal behavior. Our study suggests that patients with both suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-harm represent a distinct subgroup among patients with schizophrenia and suicidal behavior with their early onset of psychotic symptoms, high rate of repeated suicidal behavior and significant treatment delay.
Project description:Violence that leads to homicide results in an extreme financial and emotional burden on society. Juveniles who commit homicide are often tried in adult court and typically spend the majority of their lives in prison. Despite the enormous costs associated with homicidal behavior, there have been no serious neuroscientific studies examining youth who commit homicide.Here we use neuroimaging and voxel-based morphometry to examine brain gray matter in incarcerated male adolescents who committed homicide (n = 20) compared with incarcerated offenders who did not commit homicide (n = 135). Two additional control groups were used to understand further the nature of gray matter differences: incarcerated offenders who did not commit homicide matched on important demographic and psychometric variables (n = 20) and healthy participants from the community (n = 21).Compared with incarcerated adolescents who did not commit homicide (n = 135), incarcerated homicide offenders had reduced gray matter volumes in the medial and lateral temporal lobes, including the hippocampus and posterior insula. Feature selection and support vector machine learning classified offenders into the homicide and non-homicide groups with 81% overall accuracy.Our results indicate that brain structural differences may help identify those at the highest risk for committing serious violent offenses.
Project description:Importance:Community-based studies have linked psychotic experiences (PEs) with increased risks of suicidal thoughts and behaviors (STBs). However, it is not known if these associations vary across the life course or if mental disorders contribute to these associations. Objective:To examine the temporal association between PEs and subsequent STBs across the life span as well as the influence of mental disorders (antecedent to the STBs) on these associations. Design, Setting, and Participants:A total of 33?370 adult respondents across 19 countries from the World Health Organization World Mental Health Surveys were assessed for PEs, STBs (ie, ideation, plans, and attempts), and 21 DSM-IV mental disorders. Discrete-time survival analysis was used to investigate the associations of PEs with subsequent onset of STBs. Main Outcomes and Measures:Prevalence and frequency of STBs with PEs, and odds ratios and 95% CIs. Results:Of 33?370 included participants, among those with PEs (n?=?2488), the lifetime prevalence (SE) of suicidal ideation, plans, and attempts was 28.5% (1.3), 10.8% (0.7), and 10.2% (0.7), respectively. Respondents with 1 or more PEs had 2-fold increased odds of subsequent STBs after adjusting for antecedent or intervening mental disorders (suicidal ideation: odds ratio, 2.2; 95% CI, 1.8-2.6; suicide plans: odds ratio, 2.1; 95% CI, 1.7-2.6; and suicide attempts: odds ratio, 1.9; 95% CI, 1.5-2.5). There were significant dose-response relationships of number of PE types with subsequent STBs that persisted after adjustment for mental disorders. Although PEs were significant predictors of subsequent STB onset across all life stages, associations were strongest in individuals 12 years and younger. After adjustment for antecedent mental disorders, the overall population attributable risk proportions for lifetime suicidal ideation, plans, and attempts associated with temporally prior PEs were 5.3%, 5.7%, and 4.8%, respectively. Conclusions and Relevance:Psychotic experiences are associated with elevated odds of subsequent STBs across the life course that cannot be explained by antecedent mental disorders. These results highlight the importance of including information about PEs in screening instruments designed to predict STBs.
Project description:Classification and prediction of suicide attempts in high-risk groups is important for preventing suicide. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether the information from multiple clinical scales has classification power for identifying actual suicide attempts. Patients with depression and anxiety disorders (N?=?573) were included, and each participant completed 31 self-report psychiatric scales and questionnaires about their history of suicide attempts. We then trained an artificial neural network classifier with 41 variables (31 psychiatric scales and 10 sociodemographic elements) and ranked the contribution of each variable for the classification of suicide attempts. To evaluate the clinical applicability of our model, we measured classification performance with top-ranked predictors. Our model had an overall accuracy of 93.7% in 1-month, 90.8% in 1-year, and 87.4% in lifetime suicide attempts detection. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC) was the highest for 1-month suicide attempts detection (0.93), followed by lifetime (0.89), and 1-year detection (0.87). Among all variables, the Emotion Regulation Questionnaire had the highest contribution, and the positive and negative characteristics of the scales similarly contributed to classification performance. Performance on suicide attempts classification was largely maintained when we only used the top five ranked variables for training (AUROC; 1-month, 0.75, 1-year, 0.85, lifetime suicide attempts detection, 0.87). Our findings indicate that information from self-report clinical scales can be useful for the classification of suicide attempts. Based on the reliable performance of the top five predictors alone, this machine learning approach could help clinicians identify high-risk patients in clinical settings.
Project description:This study aimed to investigate whether violent and non-violent offending were related to elevated risk of suicide. We also investigated whether the risk was higher among those with repeated offences and how experiences of substance misuse and suicide attempt modified the relationship.A nationwide prospective cohort study.A register study of 48 834 conscripted men in 1969/1970 in Sweden followed up during a 35-year period in official registers.A birth cohort of 48 834 men who were mandatory conscripted for military service in 1969/70 at the age of 18-20 years. Possible confounders were retrieved from psychological assessments at conscription and the cohort was linked to mortality and hospitalisation and crime records from 1970 onwards. Estimates of suicide risks were calculated as HR with 95% CIs using Cox proportional regression analyses with adjustment for potential confounding by family, psychological and behavioural factors including substance use and psychiatric disorders.Of the total cohort, 2671 (5.5%) persons died during the follow-up period. Of these, 615 (23%) persons died due to suicide. Non-violent criminality was evident for 29% and violent criminality for 4.7% of all the participants. In the crude model, the violent offenders had nearly five times higher risk (HR=4.69, 3.56 to 6.19) to die from suicide and non-violent criminals had about two times higher risk (HR=2.08, 1.72 to 2.52). In the fully adjusted model, the HRs were still significant for suicide in the non-violent group.Experiences of violent or non-violent criminality were associated with increased risk of suicide. Comorbidity with alcohol and substance use and psychiatric disorders modified the risk, but the suicide risk remained significantly elevated for non-violent criminals. It is crucial to identify offenders and especially repeated offenders who also suffer from alcohol or substance misuse and psychiatric illness in clinical settings in order to prevent suicide.
Project description:Numerous studies have verified that insomnia is associated with suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and death by suicide. Limited population-based cohort studies have been conducted to examine the association. The present study aimed to analyze whether insomnia increases the risk of suicide attempts and verify the effects of insomnia on suicide risk.This study is a cohort study using 2000-2013 hospitalization data from the National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD) to track the rate of suicide attempts among insomnia patients aged 15 years or older. In addition, a 1:2 pairing based on sex, age, and date of hospitalization was conducted to identify the reference cohort (patients without insomnia). Cox proportional hazard model was used to assess the effects of insomnia on suicide risk.The total number of hospitalized patients aged 15 years or older was 479,967 between 2000 and 2013 (159,989 patients with insomnia and 319,978 patients without insomnia). After adjusting for confounders, suicide risk in insomnia patients was 3.533-fold that of patients without insomnia (adjusted hazard ratio [HR]?=?3.533, 95% confidence interval [CI]?=?3.059-4.080, P?<?0.001). Suicide risk in low-income patients was 1.434-fold (adjusted HR?=?1.434, 95% CI?=?1.184-1.736, P?<?0.001) that of non-low-income patients. Suicide risk in patients with drug dependence and with mental disorders was 1.592-fold (adjusted HR?=?1.592, 95% CI?=?1.220-2.077, P?<?0.001) and 4.483-fold (adjusted HR?=?4.483, 95% CI?=?3.934-5.109, P?<?0.001) that of patients without drug dependence and without mental disorders, respectively. In the female population, suicide risk in insomnia patients was 4.186-fold (adjusted HR?=?4.186, 95% CI?=?3.429-5.111, P?<?0.001) that of patients without insomnia. Among patients aged 25-44 years, suicide risk in insomnia patients was 5.546-fold (adjusted HR?=?5.546, 95% CI?=?4.236-7.262, P?<?0.001) that of patients without insomnia. Furthermore, the suicide risk of insomnia patients with mental disorders was 18.322-fold that of patients without insomnia and mental disorders (P?<?0.001).Insomnia, low income, drug dependence, and mental disorders are independent risk factors for suicide attempts. Female patients and those aged 25-44 years are at high risk of suicide due to insomnia. Insomnia, mental disorders, and low income exhibit a synergistic effect on suicide attempts. Clinicians should pay attention to mental status and income level of insomnia patients.
Project description:Background: The capacity for empathy plays an important role in interpersonal relationships and social functioning, and impairments in empathy can have negative effects on social interactions and overall social adjustment. This suggests that empathy may be a critical target for intervention in individuals who struggle with social interactions, yet it is unclear if the skills required for empathy are malleable. This study investigates the efficacy of targeted social cognitive training for improving empathic skills. Methods: Forty-five individuals (mean age = 24) were included in this study. Twenty-four individuals were allocated to the active social cognition training group and 21 individuals were allocated to a computer games control condition. Subjects completed approximately 10.5 h of training over two weeks. Pre- and post- training, they completed measures of empathy and emotion recognition, including the Interpersonal Reactivity Inventory (IRI) and an empathic accuracy task. ANOVA and regression analyses tested changes in participants' performance on the empathic accuracy task and scores on the IRI subscales were used to assess the effect of the social cognitive training. Results: Repeated measures ANOVA show that there is a significant group by timepoint interaction on the Empathic Accuracy task, with individuals who completed the social cognition training showing a significant improvement in performance following training. There were no significant changes for either group on any of the self-report IRI subscales. Individuals in the active training group show significant improvement on negative valence videos and a trend towards improvement on positive valence videos. In addition, individuals in social cognition active training group who reported higher intrinsic motivation demonstrated greater improvement on the Empathic Accuracy task. Conclusions: Individuals who completed a computerized social cognition training program demonstrated improved performance on a rater objective measure of empathic accuracy while individuals who completed a computer game control condition did not demonstrate any significant changes in their performance on the empathic accuracy task. These results suggest that targeted training in social cognition may increase empathic abilities, even in healthy individuals, and that this training may be beneficial to individuals with social cognitive deficits.
Project description:Childhood psychotic symptoms are associated with increased rates of schizophrenia, other psychiatric disorders, and suicide attempts in adulthood; thus, elucidating early risk indicators is crucial to target prevention efforts. There is considerable discordance for psychotic symptoms between monozygotic twins, indicating that child-specific non-genetic factors must be involved. Epigenetic processes may constitute one of these factors and have not yet been investigated in relation to childhood psychotic symptoms. Therefore, this study explored whether differences in DNA methylation at age 10 were associated with monozygotic twin discordance for psychotic symptoms at age 12. The Environmental Risk (E-Risk) Longitudinal Twin Study cohort of 2,232 children (1,116 twin pairs) was assessed for age-12 psychotic symptoms and 24 monozygotic twin pairs discordant for symptoms were identified for methylomic comparison. Children provided buccal samples at ages 5 and 10. DNA was bisulfite modified and DNA methylation was quantified using the Infinium HumanMethylation450 array. Differentially methylated positions (DMPs) associated with psychotic symptoms were subsequently tested in post-mortem prefrontal cortex tissue from adult schizophrenia patients and age-matched controls. Site-specific DNA methylation differences were observed at age 10 between monozygotic twins discordant for age-12 psychotic symptoms. Similar DMPs were not found at age 5. The top-ranked psychosis-associated DMP (cg23933044), located in the promoter of the C5ORF42 gene, was also hypomethylated in post-mortem prefrontal cortex brain tissue from schizophrenia patients compared to unaffected controls. These data tentatively suggest that epigenetic variation in peripheral tissue is associated with childhood psychotic symptoms and may indicate susceptibility to schizophrenia and other mental health problems.